Belfast Telegraph

Rapist father let brother and pal abuse his kids, trial told

By George Jackson

Two brothers and a third man, a family friend, have gone on trial at Londonderry Crown Court, sitting in Coleraine, charged with a combined total of 56 charges of sexually and physically abusing a young boy and a young girl over an eight-year period, starting in 1990 when the girl was aged six and the boy aged seven.

The charges include rape, gross indecency with children, indecent assault, buggery, common assault, child cruelty, and one of the defendants is charged with making his house available for the defilement of his daughter.

Opening the case to a jury of six men and six women before Judge Gordon Kerr, prosecutor, Jackie Orr QC said that they might find some of the evidence distressing.

The allegations have been made by the daughter and son of one of the defendants.

The jury was told of drinking parties attended by eight or nine men where the children's father allegedly allowed his daughter to be raped.

"The men played cards to see who would go first," Ms Orr told the jurors.

She said the evidence involved prolonged physical abuse, beatings, throttlings and both victims being burned with cigarettes by one of their abusers.

The physical abuse then escalated into serious sexual abuse, including multiple rapes.

Ms Orr said the alleged attacks happened when the boy and girl, who are now adults, were on access visits to the home of their estranged father.

It's alleged the father sexually abused his son and daughter and allowed other men, including his brother and a friend, to abuse them too.

The prosecutor said on one occasion, when the girl was 10 years old, just before Christmas during a visit to her father's house, "he told her he had a Christmas present for her and told her to go to the bedroom and undress. He told her to get into bed. Then he got into bed and raped her. She remembers the pain and she screamed, but he said – you like it, you like it. Then he called her a whore. He raped her again the next morning."

On another occasion the children's uncle raped the girl in her father's home.

"They took it in turns to rape her. She was crying and they were laughing. They videotaped it and later they made her watch it," the prosecutor said.

In relation to the third defendant, the family friend, Ms Orr said the evidence was he raped the girl in her father's home.

"He brought the friend into the girl's bedroom and said 'happy birthday' to him. Then he closed the door and left him alone with his daughter and he raped her," she added.

The trial, which is expected to last six weeks, continues.

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